1. Comrade Norwegen

    Comrade Norwegen Puttering Along

    Hello fellow Trabi owners!

    I purchased my first Trabant a few months ago, and recently got it running after it had been standing still since 1994.

    I'm having some starting issues which I believe is related to the float valve in carburettor, which is going to be sorted soon. The engine runs fine whenever it starts.

    When I'm test driving the car, it seems underpowered. By underpowered I mean it barely goes forward in 1st gear uphill, and trying to engage 1st gear in a slightly incline is a no go.

    I believe the ignition timing needs adjusting and I think the clutch is soon to be replaced, but are there other tips and tricks in order to get the performance back?

    Many thanks!
  2. 'bant

    'bant Loyal Comrade

    Mine was lacking power when I first got it. The main faults were a sticking needle valve in the carburettor and that the float level was wrong. This meant that the car would not run on full throttle and would cut out at random moments. I drove the car 250km home from Hopland to Gol and was down to 30 km/h in second gear in many places. It would not pull more than 70-75 km/h on the flat before the engine started stuttering.

    In addition there was only one gasket between the carb and engine and that was leaking fuel onto the front of the engine. Mine now will pull 50-60 km/h in third on similar hills in and around Gol. So doing a carb refurbish is a good place to start. You seem to have done some work on the fuel system, but I would check that you have a good fuel flow at the carb end of the fuel line. I had problems starting when hot, (cold start is fine) this was solved by fitting a new battery.

    Information on setting the float level is to be found in the Trabant workshop manual (there's a PDF of the English language version on this site).
  3. Comrade Norwegen

    Comrade Norwegen Puttering Along

    Excellent, I will have a look into the issue with the carburettor!
    Thanks for the info!
  4. Wartburg353W

    Wartburg353W Loyal Comrade

    I drove a Wartburg that behaved that way once and the parking brake was stuck, even though the lever was down, the brake was still engaged.
  5. Comrade Norwegen

    Comrade Norwegen Puttering Along

    I don't think that's the problem, both the car and wheels rotate freely when the parking brake is off. I checked that when changing the brake shoes earlier
  6. mati0921

    mati0921 Loyal Comrade

    I put an old carb on mine from a car that had been sitting for way too long, and one ef the channels was blocked inside, so it only ran on the idle circuit. whenever the gas pedal was pressed more than halfway down it died out. :)
  7. Ron

    Ron Premium Member Forum Donor

    Is it definitely firing on both cylinders? Just a thought.
  8. Comrade Norwegen

    Comrade Norwegen Puttering Along

    The ignition circuit from the coils to spark plugs is new, and both plugs are giving sparks.

    The engine seems to run too smoothly when idling to be running on one cylinder..

    Yesterday I removed the carburettor from the engine and gave it a nice clean, now I'm just waiting for the carburettor renewal kit from Trabantwelt.de. I'll post back an update over the weekend as soon as the carburettor is mounted back in!

    Edit: typos
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2015
    Ron likes this.
  9. Comrade Norwegen

    Comrade Norwegen Puttering Along

    Ok, so I received the carburettor renewal kit today.
    I was just checking the manual and it describes two different settings of fuel levels, depending on which needle valve you got.

    I'm a bit unsure of which type needle valve I received is;
    The one I received doesn't seem to be springed, apart from the very tip / inner needle. The outer stem is not springed, and goes up/down with gravity.

    I haven't really worked with carburettors before, so any help would be great.

    Attached Files:

  10. 'bant

    'bant Loyal Comrade

    The one in your picture is the sprung needle valve. The one without a spring only has one solid pin in the centre. You can just make out the difference in the two diagrams on page 34 of the PDF manual.
  11. Comrade Norwegen

    Comrade Norwegen Puttering Along

    Alright, thanks for the answer :)

    I'll get everything together tomorrow, as right now I'm reading for a science test at school.
  12. 'bant

    'bant Loyal Comrade

    Sounds like the perfect moment to do something really important such as the washing up or putting a carburettor back together! :)
  13. Comrade Norwegen

    Comrade Norwegen Puttering Along

    So true! But I managed to focus on school!

    Anyways, the carburettor is now fitted to the car, and the gap between the cover plate and the float is set at 13mm. Still there is some drops of petrol dripping out from the bottom of the carburettor when the fuel valve is opened. It drips roughly every 15 seconds or so.

    When set at 11 millimeters the carburettor flooded, the fuel just ran through the carburettor straight on to the garage floor.

    The carburettor in question is a 28HB2-9
    Also, now the car doesn't start at all... Any tips?
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2015
  14. Comrade Norwegen

    Comrade Norwegen Puttering Along

    I installed the new spark plugs that came with the package yesterday.
    Double checked the valve clearance, which is now set back to 11mm from the cover to the float.
    The carburettor does not leak now, but I still can't get the engine to turn over.

    I checked the spark plugs and they both were clean after trying to start it, so no fuel is coming in to the Chambers.

    My guess is that the float is either not set correctly or somehow the fuel doesn't fill the float chamber properly.
  15. 'bant

    'bant Loyal Comrade

    So the starter motor turns the engine over but the engine won't start?
    Check the fuel stopcock is open.
    Check that fuel comes out of the fuel line where it connects to the carburettor when the stopcock is open. It should run out quite quickly.
    Do you have a spark at the spark plug end of the spark plug cables?
  16. Comrade Norwegen

    Comrade Norwegen Puttering Along

    The fuel runs easily down to the carburettor, I'm wondering if the float and valve is working correctly, because I only seem to get fuel into the float chamber when lifting the cover plate.

    Haven't checked the new spark plugs for spark, but they were dry after trying to start the engine. So there is no fuel coming in to the engine
  17. 'bant

    'bant Loyal Comrade

    Float is jammed in the chamber? is the choke pulled out? Mine won't start from cold without pulling the choke out.
  18. Comrade Norwegen

    Comrade Norwegen Puttering Along

    I'm guessing probably the float is jammed in the chamber somehow.
    The choke is pulled out when starting
  19. 'bant

    'bant Loyal Comrade

    Check for play where hinge pin goes through the float. It is just a brass tab folded over. If you have fitted the new float from the kit, try the old one instead. Or compare the two.
  20. Comrade Norwegen

    Comrade Norwegen Puttering Along

    There is a little play with the float.
    I can compare the two in just a little bit

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